Becoming a tennis line or chair umpire

There are two types of tennis umpires within the sport: line umpires and chair umpires.

A line umpire is responsible for calling the lines on the tennis court and the chair umpire is responsible for calling the score and upholding the rules of tennis.

You need to work your way up to becoming a chair umpire by starting as a line umpire. Once you are trained you can become a tennis umpire at local county and regional competition and certain selected tennis umpires get to officiate at Wimbledon and international events.

Becoming a line umpire

You will need to attend and pass a one day basic line umpire course which provides an introduction to line umpiring. 

The day will be a combination of classroom and on court work and the course is a pass/fail dependent on your performance on the day.

The minimum age to take the course is 16.

Please note there will be no Basic Line Umpire courses taking place in 2019. Check back during 2020 for any updates.

Becoming a chair umpire

Once you have gained some experience as a line umpire, licensed umpires are eligible to be invited to apply for selection on to a chair umpire accreditation course.

This two day course is run twice a year and will build on your knowledge as a line umpire with an introduction to chair umpiring. The course is a combination of classroom and on-court work and includes an exam at the end of the course.

Dates of this course will be advertised on this page later this year.

Officials licence scheme

Once you have successfully completed the basic line umpire course you can apply online for an LTA officials’ licence.  Officials must have undergone a criminal record check in order to apply for an officials licence. 

Find out more about the officials licence scheme.

Requesting umpires for events

If you are from a venue and would like a team of umpires for your club finals day or another tournament please complete the request for officials form and email this to